Serious Games, Virtual Worlds
Within the framework of the Digital Assises, on May 29, 2008, Valérie Pécresse indicated the main orientations of the digital policy at the University. Serious games were mentioned:
“I would like universities to create a real heritage of their digital documentation, with recorded lessons, digitized documents, or even” serious games “, this software based on video game technologies, and which allow you to learn, train or test skills and knowledge. Our objective can then be summed up in one sentence “100% of teaching documents for 100% of students”.
The Isaac report – Serious Games
The “Digital University” report addresses the subject of video games, and more particularly serious games.
New uses of digital: “In addition to online gaming communities, new 3D virtual spaces are emerging and also bring together several million users. These virtual spaces are taken over by individuals who establish any type of activity there, whether it be paid of free downloadable games from gs2us.com/games/tr. That by various and varied institutions such as companies but also universities. Advertising space of course, space of recruitment for companies, Second Life is also a space of exchange and learning since several universities (mainly North American) provide it.
Finally, video games are no longer simply seen as a simple devouring distraction for new generations. The growing success of video games among young people, the arrival of new interfaces on new home consoles (Nintendo DS, Wii), opening them up to new audiences (women, seniors), obliges to rethink the game.
Its educational potential has been the subject of several studies and is reflected in the notion of “serious game”. Institutions like the American army, medical universities, but also a company like IBM, have developed video games in order to train their staff in specific issues (urban guerrilla warfare, operating theaters, management of business processes in business). The interfaces of video games, their narrative structure, the learning methods (trial and error) appear to be interesting characteristics for training. The fact remains that the economic model of video games to date prevents a more rapid development of “serious games” in education. Financial and human investments, the life cycle of games, the preponderant role of console manufacturers (Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft) on the standards and economic conditions of this industry constitute serious obstacles to the development of video games for the teaching. ”
Launch serious game research program
There is no time for politics. The educational sector has to decide on proposals for a digital policy in higher education … “If the potential of” serious games “for learning is proven, the economic conditions necessary to develop uses in higher education are currently not met. A research program on the technical and economic conditions that would allow its use in pedagogy could usefully help to accelerate its use. It would be advisable to bring together one or more multidisciplinary teams in order to understand the various aspects linked to the technical, economic and pedagogical development of such tools. ”
In all current digital teaching methods, we have been able, on numerous occasions, to favor what are called serious games.
What are these Serious Games?
Serious games are fun applications, often digital, but not exclusively. If they are playful in their form and in their conduct, we call them “serious” games because they are quite serious in their purpose. Through entertaining and entertaining processes, they aim, in fact, to promote the real acquisition of skills, know-how or disposition.
Today there are serious games for all ages and for all types of training. They are not systematically implemented in all distance training courses, no doubt because they require a particular design effort. Here, we will have the opportunity to come back to this subject, which seems essential to us when talking about distance education and applied pedagogy.